painfully true

Kate McKinnon Returns To 'SNL' To Poke Fun At How Moms Give Gifts

Everyone knows a mom just like this... and it might be you.

Kate McKinnon returned to SNL this week to make fun of how some moms give gifts.
SNL/YouTube

There’s been something missing since comedian Kate McKinnon left Saturday Night Live in 2022 after a ten-year run on the late-night sketch show. The writer and actor brought so many laughs to the show, and often dished out super-relatable content to women across the country.

But on Saturday, audiences got a special treat: McKinnon returned for one night only as the show’s special guest, and the show was better for it. And the stand-out sketch was one that everyone, especially moms, could relate to really deeply, whether you saw yourself in the main character or as someone else in the room.

The sketch, called “Gifts from Mom,” featured McKinnon as mom, James Austin Johnson playing her husband, Chloe Fineman and Molly Kearney playing their daughters, and Marcello Hernández and Devon Walker playing their respective boyfriends.

And it perfectly captured just how some moms can’t manage gift-giving without way too much self-criticism and self-deprecation.

As the scene opens, McKinnon admits that she got everyone the family a little something for the holidays even though the family had agreed not to do gift-giving.

But her loved ones hardly have a chance to open anything before she starts insulting herself and the gifts.

It starts out pretty normal. “It’s stupid stuff,” she waves everyone off. “I just wanted you to have something to open.”

But then things escalate quickly.

“It’s nothing. If you hate it, you can return it,” she says. “I don’t even know where I got it. You can donate it.”

“I suck. I take up space and I hurt people,” she continues. “The presents aren’t good and neither am I.”

Which of your mom relatives is this reminding you of? Or is it you?

The present-opening continues and so does the mom’s commentary.

“I did my best and my best is bad. Put me in a home,” she begs. “Please open them. They are pieces of trash from the dumbest woman alive. I’m sorry I’m your mother.”

Of course, when it’s dad’s turn to give gifts, they are absolutely awful (and not wrapped), but he’s confident and proud of every single one, even when they’re offensive.

Sounds about right? Is this supposed to be a fictional sketch? Or one where we laugh until we cry?

Over on TikTok, SNL staff writer Ceara O’Sullivan revealed that she co-wrote the scene with head writer Alison Gates — and that the character was largely based on her mom.

“Close observers will note that this mom is named Beth after my real mom,” she wrote in the comments.

This isn’t the first time SNL and McKinnon have spoofed moms at Christmastime. In 2021, she starred in a skit that revealed what moms really want for Christmas: grandchildren. Kristen Wiig might just hold the trophy for funniest SNL Christmas mom sketch: the one where mom gets a robe for Christmas every year.